Senseless. Patti’s death was the responsibility of some shadowy man only Cici currently knew about, but, already, the pain from her demise rippled out to Patti’s son and husband and into the community. Sam wiggled his fingers, a long-standing trick to keep from balling his hands into fists.
If the last year taught him anything, Cici would continue to have visions and dreams until the culprit was found. And Sam planned to find him—fast. So Cici wouldn’t have to suffer more.
That was damn cold comfort.
Benson began his report, snapping Sam out of his reverie. “We’ve run blood and I have a preliminary toxicology report I wanted to mention.”
“Yeah?” Sam asked.
“Mmm. She had epinephrine in her system. I’ll show you the mark on her thigh when we get there.”
“She’s allergic to cats,” Sam said. “And we think one might have been involved with her drowning.”
Benson pulled off a glove and picked up a small stack of papers. He handed them to Sam, who handed them to Raynor.
“It’s his case,” Sam said.
Benson nodded, looking chagrined. “Sorry. Right, well. The epinephrine use makes sense if she was allergic to cats. What doesn’t make sense is the volume of diphenhydramine in her system.”
He pointed to a number on the printout.
“What name would I know the drug by?” Sam asked.
“Benadryl,” Benson said.
Raynor frowned. “That’s high?”
Sam grunted in agreement. “The volume is strange. Unless she took it because the EPI pen didn’t work?”
Benson shook his head. “Because she wasn’t in the water long, her cells didn’t undergo lysis. Some of the tissues swelled in her nasal and sinus cavities, or were already swollen from exposure or a histamine reaction. I’d expect tissue damage with a submersion. But the deceased’s mouth, lips and tongue didn’t swell much, which leads me to believe the epinephrine worked as it was supposed to. And that’s part of why I had this tox report ready for you. I had a hunch about the epinephrine.”
Sam mulled over Benson’s words. He brought out the baggie with the crushed camera. He asked, “Can your team run this? It’s taken from the victim’s home. And also the water sample from the rain barrel that Raynor collected.”
“Sure,” Benson said. “You need the results now?”
“Sooner than,” Sam concurred.